15 to Finish
Graduate in Two Years, Avoid Debt and Save Money!
Take 15 credits each semester, and 30 credits a year, so you can graduate in two years. Along the way, you’ll avoid taking on debt and save money by only paying two years’ tuition.
There are many more reasons to take 15 credits per semester – but it’s not for everyone.
To learn more, review the information on this page and for help figuring out if 15 to Finish is for you, talk to your advisor.
Why 15 Credits Each Semester?
- 60 credits are required to graduate and you can finish in two years if you take 15 per semester.
- By graduating in two years, you’ll have more options. You can begin your path to an advanced degree, take time off to travel or volunteer, or start working full-time.
- If you’re already taking 12-14 credits, the additional 2 or 3 credits should be manageable.
- Take advantage of LaGuardia’s unique semesters, which consist of a 12-week session + a 6-week session, to ease your school workload and schedule classes so they don’t conflict with your other commitments.
The faster you graduate, the less debt, if any, you’re likely to take on.
- Pell and/or TAP funds are not unlimited. Pell grants cover up to 12 semesters (6 years based on 30 credits per year) and TAP covers up to 8 semesters (4 years based on 30 credits per year.) So if you use your time sensibly here at LaGuardia, you can stretch that “free” grant money to cover more of your higher tuition if you choose to attend a senior college.
- Every semester beyond Pell and TAP limits will cost you more in tuition.
- If you qualify for the New York State Excelsior Scholarship, completing the required 30 credits for your major each year could mean your tuition would be fully covered at LaGuardia, CUNY and/or SUNY.
Each extra semester comes with a cost, and the longer it takes, the more life can get in the way and decrease the likelihood you will earn your degree.
Four Ways To Graduate In Two Years
LaGuardia’s unique semesters, which consist of a 12-week session + a 6-week session, will help you ease your workload. You have four great options* for taking 30 credits per year.
*ASAP students take the “Balance” option: 12 credits, 3 credits, 12 credits, 3 credits. For more information, speak to your ASAP advisor.
Why 15 Credits Each Semester?
Commit to College, LaGuardia, and Graduation
Taking 15 credits per semester may not be easy, but it will give you the advantage of graduating in two years and getting ahead. Meet with your advisor to map out a plan and balanced schedule so you can earn the degree you want in two years, and stick to it.
Take All of the Required Courses for Your Major
Lay out a plan so you don’t miss taking a class. Refer to your major’s Degree Map.
Understand When to Take Electives
Electives are classes that are not required by your major but you want to take because they interest you. But you have to keep track of elective credits because once you are beyond your credit limit, they may cost you your student aid and they don’t count toward graduation.
Make Every Credit Count
Credits that don’t count toward your degree are not covered by Financial Aid.
Apply for Student Aid
Fill out a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) each year by June 30, to determine your eligibility for federal, state, and college-sponsored financial aid, including grants, educational loans, and work-study programs. You may be eligible for grants that do not have to be paid-back. With financial assistance, you can concentrate on your studies, work fewer hours and finish college faster. For more information and how to apply, contact the Financial Aid Office .
Ask for Help
On campus, you’re surrounded with people and resources with the purpose of helping you from application to graduation. Ask for help from professors, advisors and fellow students when you need it.
Is Taking 15 Credits each Semester For Me? (Q&A)
Yes. Although you’re a full time student at 12 credits, to graduate in two years you have to take 15 credits each semester.
Yes but only if you can manage your time to handle the additional course load. By taking at least 12 credits, you become a full time student eligible for financial aid. When you take 15 credits, you save money and graduate faster. However, you must examine your personal commitments outside of college to evaluate if you can take more classes and have additional time for studying and homework.
Full-time students that qualify for in-state tuition can add Session II classes at no additional cost. Part time students that qualify for in-state tuition and are considering adding classes in Session II should do so before the Financial Aid Certification date in order to become full time and qualify for Financial Aid.
Yes, if you’re a full time student (already taking 12 credits) and you qualify for in-state tuition, you can register for the second session for no additional cost! For more information, talk to your advisor.
The great thing is that it won’t! As a full-time student qualifying for in-state tuition, there is no additional cost for adding classes to get to 15 credits. In fact, Session II is free if you qualify.
If you take advantage of LaGuardia’s unique 12-week and 6-week sessions, you can ease your school workload and schedule classes so they don’t conflict with your other commitments. Taking 15 credits each semester may not be easy, but it will give you the advantage of graduating in two years and getting ahead. Meet with your advisor to map out a plan and balanced schedule so you can earn the degree you want in two years.
You can register for classes by visiting CUNYfirst. If you need help finding the right plan, then contact your Advisor by signing into My LaGuardia.
For help figuring out if 15 credits is right for you, talk to your advisor.